Despite India’s ascent as world beaters thanks to the IPL’s riches, former Pakistan all-rounder Mudassar Nazar believes his country will once again be the kings of Asian cricket.
From the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s, Pakistan ruled the subcontinent with their on-field prowess under Imran Khan, who led them to the 1992 World Cup, before India reversed the tables.
“I don’t believe Pakistan has changed in any way.” “It is India that has changed,” Nazar told AFP ahead of Sunday’s Twenty20 World Cup match between India and Pakistan in Dubai.
“Since the IPL began, they’ve made excellent use of the money.” If you look at the domestic competition in India, you can see how well all of the associations organize their cricket.
“Everyone has their own stadium, their own academies, school cricket, state cricket,” he continued. Cricket is a popular sport in India.
“However, England and Australia have regularly performed well…India is in the forefront and among the top three teams in the globe.”
The IPL, which began in 2008, a year after the first T20 World Cup, ushered in a new age of white-ball cricket, with the tournament breaking new ground in terms of viewership and fan base.
In 2019, the Duff and Phelps financial firm projected the IPL’s brand value to be $6.7 billion, making it the richest T20 competition in the world.
At the same time, following the 2009 terror attack on the visiting Sri Lankan team, Pakistan was becoming a no-go zone for international cricket.
“The BCCI has been quite astute in their use of IPL funds.” “Indian cricket was strong before that, but it has been much more consistent since then,” added Nazar.
“They’ve covered all the bases.” When it comes to fast bowling, spinners, fielding, and the physical aspect of the game, it’s a force to be reckoned with. Every season, it appears that they are acquiring top-tier batsmen. They appear to be formidable at the moment.”
‘THE TABLES ARE TURNING.’
However, Nazar is optimistic that the Pakistan Super League (PSL), the country’s premier T20 tournament, and new administration would bring the game back to life.
“It’s also a question of cycles.” “For a decade, we may be better than the rest of the world, and then someone else catches up,” remarked Nazar, who batted over 38 in 76 Tests between 1976 and 1989.
He also predicts a bright future for Ramiz Raja, the new head of the PCB.
“With the PSL, things have begun to improve, but it will take time. India takes a long time to recover.”
“There is no club cricket and very little state cricket, so that’s a roadblock.”
“But now, with the new management in place, Ramiz is a former cricketer, and I believe he can better shape things, put us on the correct track, and in the next couple of years, we will most likely be as strong as we were.”
Pakistan used to have a far better head-to-head record versus India, which has been playing catch-up with their arch-rivals since 2000.
Nazar, a former member of Pakistan’s great team, believes the country would one day turn a corner and win their first World Cup match against India.
“We always had the advantage while we were playing, and towards the conclusion of my career, we won more games versus India than we lost,” Nazar, 65, remarked.
“Someone has to come up with something brilliant.” Someone is playing a fantastic game. Someone will score a decent century and bowl a decent spell, and the tables will turn.”